An Ontario, Canada, boy reportedly suffered second-degree chemical burns after using a toilet seat that was cleaned with a powerful disinfectant.
The 7-year-old boy’s mother told CTV that her son was unable to wear pants for 11 days following the March 31 incident because the pain from the burns was so great. The boy also missed nearly two weeks of school.
The mother said she decided to speak out to spread awareness so that something similar doesn’t happen to other children.
“The first couple days were really, really, really bad,” the mother said. “He couldn’t go to the bathroom without putting a towel on the outside of the toilet seat so that it was soft on his bum.”
While in the bathroom, the boy sat down on a toilet and later noticed a red rash, similar to a sunburn, spread along his legs. The rash quickly began to bubble and burn.
“It had progressed to a second-degree burn,” the mother said. She and her family subsequently filed a $250,000 lawsuit against the school board.
The school later sent a letter home to parents, warning them that some students suffered “varying levels of skin reaction” to the cleaning product after using the bathroom. The bathroom was cleaned and the products that burned the child were thoroughly inspected.
“The safety of our students and staff is our top priority and appropriate measures were taken. This is now a matter that is before the courts and we are unable to comment further,” a Waterloo Regional District School Board communications director said in a statement.
The boy ultimately returned to school and his burns began to heal, but the mother said she’s most concerned about the safety of other students.
“It’d be a shame if it happened to anybody’s child,” she said.
In a similar incident in Riverside, California, the family of a 4-year-old boy sued a private nurse after the boy was allegedly burned with a chemical that caused permanent scarring, according to KTLA.